Landscapes: Eyes to Ink

There’s something about drawing landscapes that make you feel like a true “arteest” in a way that endless people and even graphic novels just can’t manage. I guess because when you think of high art, landscapes are right up there. And I mean, who doesn’t glorify nature? And I mean also, what better way to avoid studying in a park on a cloudless day than by setting down biology notes in favor of a sketchbook? In front of me a group of guys (Russian, I think) played frisbee, and all around other students and city folk mingled. Albert Park is an idyllic piece of tranquil green in the middle of Auckland City. When the sun comes out, you really can’t be anywhere better without leaving the metro.

I’ve struggled with landscape and scenery for as many years as I’ve effortlessly drawn portraiture. It’s never engaged me much before New Zealand. It’s cool having gotten into it, even a little bit, because it’s a piece of evidence for those that kept telling me how cool it would be if New Zealand made its way into my artwork.

And indeed, a few days after that Albert Park sketch I was able to incorporate the park into the background of a piece featuring the cast of characters in my current graphic novel endeavor. I haven’t colored it yet because not only have I only had it scanned for 4 days, I’m severely intimidated by the prospect of figuring out the color scheme for a piece of this caliber.

Yet these pieces gave me the momentum to try my hand at scenery when I went to Queenstown. I’m so glad I had the time to plop myself down in the sand next to Wakatipu and sketch out the snow-capped mountains while I once more got quietly sunburned (resulting in a sweet tan line below my leggings which I will forever associate with this drawing). I’ll probably never have the chance to draw mountains like this again, or at least not for years. And I certainly won’t get to in Queenstown, New Zealand, while my best friend and sister sat beside me as we people-watched and soaked in the powerful tranquility of the world around us.